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Towson High School teacher wins statewide art educator award

Towson High School art teacher Rachel Valsing, center, poses with the award she received for being named Maryland State Art Educator of the Year at the Maryland Art Education Association awards ceremony Nov. 18.
Towson High School art teacher Rachel Valsing, center, poses with the award she received for being named Maryland State Art Educator of the Year at the Maryland Art Education Association awards ceremony Nov. 18. (Courtesy Photo/Baltimore County Public Schools)

Two of eight Baltimore County Public School teachers — including one from Towson High School — walked away with top honors Nov. 18 at a statewide art education awards ceremony.

The Maryland Art Education Association, an art education advocacy organization, named Towson High School art teacher Rachel Valsing as its Maryland State Art Educator of the Year.

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MAEA’s mission is to advocate for and advance art education in Maryland. The association holds public discussions, publishes art content and research and works with other organizations to advocate on behalf of art education throughout Maryland.

Dawn Jewell, of West Towson Elementary School, was nominated for Baltimore County’s Novice Elementary Art Teacher of the Year, according to a Baltimore County Public Schools news release.

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The awards ceremony, held at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, also featured a student art reception.

“The individuals being honored exemplify not only outstanding teaching in the arts, but also the power of community building within and outside of our schools,” Sherri Fisher, BCPS’ coordinator of visual arts, said in a statement. “I am proud that our students are able to benefit from their professionalism, dedication and expertise.”

Five other Baltimore County teachers, including Tess Stoner, of Halstead Academy; Max Savold and Hayes Bowie, of Sudbrook Middle Magnet School; Elizabeth Eckley, of Lansdowne High School; Pam Ehrenreich, of Chesapeake High School and STEM Academy, were also recognized.

Michele Momenzadeh, of Perry Hall Middle School, won Maryland Middle School Art Teacher of the Year.

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